In a month that has not been too great in terms of the future prospects for renewable energy, Sweden have given environmentalists something to cheer about. Anne Vadasz Nilsson, the director general of the Swedish Energy Markets Inspectorate, has revealed that Sweden is very much on target to achieve its aim to run solely off renewable energies by2040. Sweden already generates 57% of its 159 TWh power production from renewables such as hydro and wind, with the remainder coming from nuclear. The push to 100% renewable electricity, therefore, is not so far out of the question.
She said, “We are not densely populated, we have a lot of good places to put land-based large-scale wind and there is large potential for that in Sweden,”
Wind currently accounts for 10% of Sweden’s overall energy production, with the aim to add a further 18 TWh of renewable electricity by 2030. Perhaps the most advantageous move made by Sweden with regards to renewable energy prospects, is that they will not further subsidize any nuclear energy, nor do they plan on building any new nuclear reactors.
“Nuclear is quite an expensive energy source due to safety regulations and funding for long-term nuclear waste management among other things,” she said.
“Renewables, meaning large-scale wind in Sweden, on the other hand, are cheaper and cheaper to commission and to run. This together with low wholesale prices will make it less likely that new nuclear power plants will replace the remaining ones when they are phased out due to old age.”
There is no doubt, the opportunities presented by Sweden’s convenient geographical location and their relatively small population are incredibly appealing, however, many other countries around the world are presented with similar attributes but are nowhere near utilizing them to the admirable level that Sweden is.